Andy Williams Dies – Andy Williams’ Country Music Connection
Andy Williams, Mr. ‘Moon River,’ has died at the age of 84 on September 25, 2012 after a battle with bladder cancer.
Williams died at his home in Branson, Missouri, where he had been performing at his own theater since 1992. Just last year, 2011, I actually had the chance to bring a bus load of listeners to Branson, Mo. to see several legends in concert, including Andy Williams. At the time, the 83 year-old still had great charisma on stage and a voice that could still do justice to classics like ‘Moon River’ ‘Days Of Wine And Roses’ ‘Music To Watch Girls Go By’ and ‘Can’t Get Used To Losing You.’
Mr. Williams actually has a connection to Country Music by way of Ray Stevens and Marie Osmond. In 1970, Ray Stevens hosted a summer replacement show for The Andy Williams Show on NBC. That stint helped bring his career to new heights with the hit ‘Everything Is Beautiful,’ that Ray composed as the show’s theme song. The song was released on Andy’s record label, Barnaby Records, in addition to the Ray Steven’s classics ‘Misty’ ‘The Streak’ and ‘Turn Your Radio On.’ Jimmy Buffet and The Osmonds also recorded for Andy Williams’ record label.
Marie Osmond, another Country hitmaker, also got her start working with Andy Williams. At the age of 3, she made her debut on the Andy Williams Show alongside her brothers, The Osmonds, who were regulars on the show throughout the ’60s. Marie would later score a No. 1 Country hit in 1973 at the age of 13 with ‘Paper Roses.’ In the ’80s, she would return to the top of the Country Music charts with ‘There’s No Stopping Your Heart’ and ‘Meet Me In Montana’ with Dan Seals.
Andy Williams actually released two country flavored albums to express his love for the genre. In 1974, he recorded an album of songs written by Nashville songwriters titled ‘You Lay So Easy On My Mind.’ Then, in 1991 he recorded an album of new Country Music appropriately named, ‘Nashville.’
When I host and produce trips to see legendary artists, I always tell people to make sure you go, because you never know when and if your favorite legend will never perform again. I’m very thankful that I had the chance to see this icon live in concert last year, it will be a night that I will always remember.